SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — It’s something no college student ever wants to experience — violent threats on campus.
And in the wake of the antisemitic threats at Cornell University, it’s something other colleges and universities are taking seriously.
“A lot of it is attributed to what is happening in the Middle East directly with Israel and Hamas,” said Francis Coots, a former 34-year New York State Police Trooper and Troop D Commander. “I think as long as that continues, you will see a raised profile of the state police, but also that goes for other law enforcement agencies as well.”
Coots is now the Director of Safety at Hamilton College and has worked there for the past six years. He says law enforcement agencies are always looking at ways to keep students safe.
“They’re not sitting waiting for some type of incident to happen,” Coots said. “Talking specifically about the state police, they are making the approach to the colleges. They’re ensuring they share any intelligence they gather.”
Coots says he’s met with state police and at the moment there haven’t been any threats to Hamilton College, but he knows students may still not be at ease.
“There’s some unknown. They’re unsure and we want people to feel safe in their environment. This is their home,” he said. “Hamilton college is their home while they’re going to school, and we want them to feel safe in their home.”
Coots also says Hamilton College is paying extra attention to its security and social media networks. If any students bring forward information about threats or someone being harmed, the college will investigate.